Day Brightener

Not long ago, I did something I don’t usually do: I bought flowers for myself. They immediately brightened my day. Even the cashier complimented them.

A picture can’t adequately show dimension. The daisies are four inches in diameter. Every time I look at them, I feel a tiny spark of happiness. Gerbera daisies are my favorite flower—the one I go to on flower-giving occasions. And no matter how sad or ill the recipient feels, he or she usually mentions the beauty of these flowers.

They are a reminder to me today to give a ray of light, rather than darkness. The other day, a well-meaning person snail mailed to me a long, negative news article. I’m not exactly sure why, other than to ask me to comment on something that frightened her. I won’t say what the story was. I sent a note back saying I didn’t have a comment—that I could only provide an uninformed opinion that wouldn’t change the situation. Yet there was a noticeable contrast to how I felt in that moment and how I felt the moment I saw those daisies at the grocery store.

I didn’t mention the above to shame the person, nor am I soliciting comments that would do so. I couldn’t give her the assurance she seemed to want. After all, I’m not God. And I totally get it. Things are happening. Sometimes life feels like it’s out of control. In those moments I’m often tempted to share whatever bad mood I’m in or whatever horrible thing that has happened.

But the daisies remind me of the effect of sharing joy. As I mentioned, even the cashier complimented them. Her countenance noticeably brightened as she rang up the purchase.

How has someone brightened your countenance lately?

Photos by L. Marie.

31 thoughts on “Day Brightener

  1. I was always taught to spread good news, not negative. I’m not sure why this person made the decision and took the time to mail this article, but I’m glad you chose not to let it steal your joy. I love Gerbera daisies, too. That color is fabulous!

      • What positive moms you two had. My mom was somewhat the opposite, mostly focused on negative. Growing up with that, I need to work at being positive, but it comes easier with practice. I’m so glad you bought yourself those vibrant daisies. I’ve bought myself flowers before, as well. They brighten up the home. Thanks for sharing your brightener, L.

      • I’ve bought them a few times. Different flowers each time. However, your post reminded me of a story I got published in the magazine Angels on Earth about flowers. You’ve inspired me to share the story on my blog. If I can figure out how to scan the article from the magazine, I’ll post it tomorrow. Thank you for the inspiration. 💗🌹

      • Thanks, L. But this was a story published more than 10 years ago. Your post reminded me of it. I was working on a draft just now and accidentally clicked to publish it. I deleted and will re-post tomorrow.

  2. You brightened my day, for sure. And I think buying flowers for yourself is a great way to perk up one’s spirits. I know of at least one other writer who buys flowers for her writing space.

    Most of the negatives written about or shared are usually rants. If the writer can’t control any aspect of the situation, why spread the gloom? Thanks for cheering up my day too, L. Marie! ((( )))

  3. Can’t really remember the last time someone shared joy-inducing news with me. Part of it could be that I’ve been bombarded by negativity for so long that I’m psychologically incapable of feeling that. Read that it’s apparently a thing where too much negativity can change the brain wiring to pessimism. To be fair, I’m writing this after a night of really messed up dreams. Groggy and anxious over weirdness. Probably shouldn’t have had so much Taco Bell.

    The flowers are rather pretty.

  4. I’m glad you indulged in some flowers for yourself. I do that occasionally and it’s amazing how they lighten my spirit. I am with you about how much negativity has been dumped on us these last few years– well since 2016 if we’re being honest. I think in your situation with the snail mail negative article, I’d have put through the shredder. And that would be that.

  5. I’m assuming it’s no coincidence that your gravatar image matches your bouquet of flowers – an ever present glimpse of cheer you share with each comment you make!
    You’re right, just having a fresh bunch of flowers in a vase in the house really can perk up one’s whole mood. Funny, that.
    Kind of like just knowing He’s walking with us through every single Earthly event we have to endure – a presence that strengthens our ability to keep on keepin’ on…and often lets a smile peek out from time to time.
    I’ll answer your last question with the obvious by quoting you-know-who: “You’ve made this day a special day, by just your being you”.

  6. We all have negative thoughts and sometimes it helps to talk them over with a friend. But it seems to be a thing now for people to obsess publicly about the bad things in life. Funnily enough I was saying to someone the other day that I think one of the reasons that so many people in Britain find the whole Meghan/Harry thing so annoying is that we still fundamentally believe that people should keep a stiff upper lip in public. Not sure young people feel the same way, though. The flowers are lovely!

    • Ooo! Now I wonder how that person responded. I think you’re right about this generation doing things differently. This whole year has been a very interesting examination of the royal family that is now forever changed.

      I saw a lovely documentary on the Queen and Princess Margaret on Netflix the other day.

  7. The gerbera daisies are lovely. We give flowers to others. There’s no reason not to treat ourselves now and then. I don’t do much gardening these days, so I like to have ready-made flowers. The other day I bought a couple of pots of chrysanthemums and put them in my patio: one just outside my window, the other where I can see it on my way into the house.

    When something bothers me, sometimes it would feel good to share my concerns with other people. They might even help. It’s better to share our joys, though. There’s nothing wrong with a complaint now and then, but we shouldn’t overdo it. Maybe it’s a question of balance.

    • I agree, Nicki. It helps to choose who to rant to. But joy can be shared with anyone. I’m reminded of how you usually share your photos of flowers and other scenery on your blog. 😊

  8. The daisies are beautiful! I have two that are barely staying alive in pots. I think I need to put them in the ground somewhere. They haven’t bloomed in ages.

    I know when I get with friends, we sometimes dwell on negative topics, go into a Debbie Downer spin, but I try to limit those interactions. There are things I can do and things I can’t. I try to focus on what I can do and then hope for the best.

    I also understand that some people (many people, perhaps) just feel so helpless in the face of our troubles, whether it’s climate change or mass shootings. They want someone, anyone, to give them an answer, a solution. The thing is, even if you or I had a solution, do we have the power to make it happen? In a way we do. We can be informed and let our knowledge guide us. We can vote. But that takes time and patience. What we can’t do is wave a wand and make our political leaders do the right thing right then.

    In the meantime, buy yourself some beautiful daisies. Bring a smile to the faces around you by sharing a lovely thing. Sometimes, it’s the simplest things that brighten a person’s day.

    A few days ago, I went to a pet store to pick up cat litter. I also wanted to donate two cans of cat food that my furry kids refuse to eat (picky, picky). I couldn’t find the donation bin so one of the store staff directed me to a volunteer who was checking on the adoption center that they have at the store. You’d think I gave the woman a million dollars when I offered the cat food to her. She thanked me profusely then and again when she passed me at the checkout line. That made my day 🙂

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